October 15, 2007

Smokin' on the patio...maybe?

Due to the new state wide smoking ban, bar, restaurant and bowling alley owners are trying to figure out what to do with those pesky smokers; who ironically are their...ummm...customers!

Different places in different cities have different ideas. In Lakeville, there is a proposed "patio ordinance" that would require City Council approval before allowing the sale or consumption of food or alcohol on patios. They also have to now take into consideration neighboring homes if they happen to be in a radius of 150, due to the possiblity of noise problems and possibly smoking problems if the surrounding residents have a problem with it.

Tom Tamaro has a bowling alley in downtown Lakeville that his family has owned for 20 years and as we are all well aware, where there are pins falling there are cigs burning. However now that this new ban has affected his clientel, he now has to consider the possiblity in investing in a 20-foot by 20-foot, $15,000 smoking patio to accomodate his alienated and persecuted customers.

In St. Paul if you want to build a patio, you have to get 90 percent of people living with in 300 feet of you establishment to sign a petition allowing you to construct a patio.

As a smoker I am obviously biased in contempt for this smoking ban and the poor businesses who have to suffer for it. But all I'm asking is, how long have we known that smoking has been dangerous to our health, yet now, all the suddent we decide to pull the plug on allowing smokers to be free??

For now I guess me and my fellow second-hand murderers will be put in humiliating pens like the lepors we are.

SOURCE: http://www.twincities.com//ci_7168233?IADID=Search-www.twincities.com-www.twincities.com

Some Lake Elmo residents call new sewer plan bull...poo

A plan to build a $6 million sewer line in Lake Elmo is creating a divide among its residents and public officials.

Many residents have been protesting the plan over the past month that would call for a near 3 mile sewer line to be built between I-94 and 30 st.

The reason why some residents are so upset is the possibility of the downtown area called "old village" being changed during this suburbanizing process. The members of PeoPLE (People for Preserving Lake Elmo) don't want Lake Elmo to lose its small town charm.

City council members are saying two things 1) That downtown won't change, they are just wanting to add 600-1,600 homes, a YMCA and other developments in the surrounding area; so that the city, with current population of 7,000, can accomodate 24,000 by the year 2030. 2) The city council approved the plan proposal way back in April, so they are wondering why protesters waited so long.

The thing that has made this so ugly is the interesting fact that protesting residents have had signs expressing their contempt of the plan in their lawns for months, and now all of the sudden, the county highway department has taken out the signs calling them a, "public safety concern." Protesting residents cannot prove it, but are skeptical that the mayor and city council are behind it to shut them up.

The ugliness continues on Thursday, the city council will review an engineer's report on the sewer line.

SOURCE: http://www.twincities.com/ci_7168231?IADID=Search-www.twincities.com-www.twincities.com&nclick_check=1

October 1, 2007

attempting kidnapper gets blast from past

Northfield's Ross Matthew Wenner was charged in July with attempting to kidnap 4 young girls ages 10-14 with promises of money and invites to 'go cruising' in his SUV. He even asked held out some money and asked an 11-year-old girl to 'come and get it.' This account is according to a Dakota County criminal complaint. Wenner is in the Dakota County Jail with a $350,000 bail.

Wenner got a blast from his past thanks to his liking of young girls because when a young girl saw his picture in the paper this week because of the kidnapping story, she remembered his face as being the one who broke into her house last year and attempted to sexually assault her by gun point before she managed to escape to safety.

After last year's vicitm came forward and identified Wenner as the man who held her by gun point and tried to sexually assault her, police found linked forensic evidence at the original crime scene that connects Wenner.

Wenner now faces, on top of his attempted kidnappin charges of recent, burglary and first degree criminal sexual assault charges, according to the Scott County Sheriff's department. Is that sweet irony or poetic justice?

My source for this story was also in the Saturday, Sept. 29 issue of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Local news, titled: Kidnap suspect linked to assault."

Hate Crime Hoax

A hate crime is terrible because it is a crime that hopes to inflict malicious violence and/or emotional damage to a person or group of people because of their race, religioun, sexual orientation. But when someone cries wolf, exploiting the precedent of hate crimes inflicted on that person's particular group, it is simply appauling.

De' Andre McCoy June is a 47-year-old black ex-con living in Anoka. June called police on Wednesday morning claiming that someone had burned the crucifix symbol into his front lawn. It wouldn't be until later in the week that police would find out from some of June's former prison buddies, that this was an elaborate hoax to inspire sympathy and possible money to pay for the bail of his previous crime.

June was disgusted with this hate crime when he called it in on Wednesday claiming that, "if I leave, they win." (they being 'white supremacits/racists1).

Local news crews had sniffed out this story and his former jailhouse mates saw the story on TV. They blew the whistle on June claiming that when he was in jail with him he bragged about this along with several other schemes.

When the public immediately thought this story was real the Anoka Human Rights Commission even got involved calling an emergency meeting and planned a prayer vigil with June to be held outside his house to protest the prejiduce and hatred.

Now all the Anoka Human Rights Commission Cynthia Blesi has to say is, "False accusations are a huge hindrance to legitimate claims of bias."

June is being held at the Hennepin County Jail without bail.

my source for this story is the St. Paul Pioneer Press newspaper from Saturday, Sept. 29, Local News, titled: "Police say cross burned into lawn was a hoax."

September 24, 2007

Hollywood, Here comes the Minnesooooooootans

So I don't know if it's just me, but I'm getting really sick and tired of the nation's/world's perspective of Minnesotans. "Oh sure ya betchya," "Gee golly gosh," hockey and ice fishing is not what we're all about.

Well hopefully at the Oscars coming up in February, Minnesota can be represented in a much more glamorous Hollywood light, that will hopefully have our Twin City native award hopefuls drinking and doing drugs at the after party. At least while they're there they can explain to the idiots of the O.C. that Minnesota "Like totally does not have snow all year bro."

So anyway the hopeful buzz is centered around the extremely talented Cohen brothers of St. Louis Park. As we all do and should know they won Oscars for their writing of the 1996 hit "Fargo" as well as being nominated again for "O' Brother Where Art Thou?" And all though it was not nominated, they are the genius minds that brought us one of the most cult followed comedies in 20 years "The Big Lebowski."

There new film, set to be released in November is called, "No Country for Old Men," which critics are saying is their best work since Fargo. It is supposedly a violent western with of course the Cohens off beat, dark humor.

Another Minnesota affiliated flick that is creating a lot of buzz is "Lust Caution." This flick won the Golden Lion at the Venice flim festival, which is the same award that "Brokeback Mountain" won before its award spree a couple of years ago; it also happens to be directed by the same guy.

Win or lose, 'ya betcha or no ya betcha' Minnesota artists of the cinema will be a force to be reckoned with come Oscar season.

the original title is "Oscar buzz builds for Minnesotans" @ http://www.twincities.com/movies/ci_6968964?nclick_check=1

September 17, 2007

manslaughtering morons

Leon Stone served a 7-month sentence for manslaughter for punching a man, causing him to die, because you know he 'didn't mean to.' Well as you could assume the family of the victim, Christopher Breck, were not pleased when the punishment for the person responsible for killing their loved one could be accomplished in the same amount of time that it took to shoot the movie "Transformers."

Here's the real kicker, now he's out and at it again; stealing not killing. He went on a little burglarly-fest 2007 this past week and got caught due to the heroics of a 74-year old sweetheart, Mary Kujuwa, who Stone obviously underestimated when it comes to calling the police when someone breaks into your house.

Before entering Kujuwa's house Stone was confronted by her neigbor Michael Birrenbach. Stone punched Birrenbach in the head, again, and got chased away by Michael and his shotgun. Stone was trying hide in Kujuwa's house when she heard a noise and called the fuzz. The punishment wasn't so leanient this time. Ramsey County District Judge Salvador Rosas sentenced Stone to seven years in prison. The Breck's probably got a little more satisfaction out of that one.

the actual title of this article is, "Parolee held in burglary spree," and it's on www.pioneerpress.com.

Metro area water problems

I guess if the state Health Department has not issued any sort of limitation or regulations on water usage in the Twin Cities' area, then I'm not going to be too worried about it. However, the fact that this story on chemically contaminated water being discovered in the Metro, with a huge picture of a child swimming in a pool (get it because if it affects our children then we must act now) was on the front page of the Sunday edition of the Strib may be somewhat of a cause to take a closer look.

Basically, the Minnesota Health Department has been finding traces of chemicals that have seaped their way into the supply of thousands of residents in the Twin Cities' area. The cause of this seems to be due to a connection with the location of water supplies and current or former landfills (and other various garbage disposing facilities) and factories/plants that need to dispose of large amounts of chemicals. Now while this may seem like a cliche problem that only Erin Brockovich could solve, the fact that long-term exposure could be dangerous to our health, means that a red flag needs to be raised and dollars spent. However, it's not like flipping the switch and all our drinking water is going to taste like kool-aid and make us younger, health officials have spent over $200 million over the past two decades to stop the problem with littler results and a lingering nusense of a problem.

So basically the problem is expensive and there is no real clear-cut way on how to deal with it. Let's hope that the good ol' scientists can get some filters pumping soon because one of the chemicals found in an Edina well in 2002 is vinyl flouride, which is a cancer-causing compound. That's freaky. I found this story on www.startribune.com and its title is, "Battling tainted water."